I have been on an Anne of Green Gables kick lately – probably since my mom loaned me her books.
Earlier this week I wrapped up Anne of the Island. While the first book by Lucy Maud Montgomery will always be my favorite, Anne of the Island is a close second because it takes us into Anne's college years and ends when Anne finally realizes that she really does love Gilbert Blythe.
I adore the fact that she discovers that marrying her best friend is a much better option than marrying her preconceived idea of a knight in shining armor.
Excerpts from the book:
"We have come to a parting of the ways, I suppose. We had to come to it. Do you think, Diana, that being grown-up is really as nice as we used to imagine it would be when we were children?" – Anne to DianaEarlier reviews of Anne books: Anne of Green Gables, Anne of Avonlea
"Most of the trouble in life comes from misunderstanding, I think..." – Anne to Ruby
Anne walked home very slowly in the moonlight. The evening had changed something for her. Life held a different meaning, a deeper purpose. On the surface it would go on just the same; but the deeps had been stirred. It must not be with her as with poor butterfly Ruby. When she came to the end of one life it must not be to face the next with shrinking terror something wholly different – something for which accustomed thought and ideal and aspiration had unfitted her. The little things of life, sweet and excellent in their place, must not be the things lived for; the highest must be sought and followed; the life of heaven must be begun here on earth.
"Miss Stacy told me long ago that by the time I was twenty my character would be formed, for good or evil. I don't feel that it's what it should be. It's full of flaws." – Anne to Aunt Jamesina
Aunt Jamesina to Anne: "So's everybody's... Mine's cracked in a hundred places. Your Miss Stacy likely meant that when you are twenty you character would have got its permanent bent in one direction or 'tother, and would go on developing in that line. Don't worry over it, Anne. Do your duty by God and your neighbor and yourself, and have a good time. That's my philosophy and it's always worked pretty well."
To be told in rhythmic cadences that her eyes were stars of the morning – that her cheek had the flush it stole from the sunrise – that her lips were redder than the roses of Paradise, was thrillingly romantic. Gilbert would never have dreamed of writing a sonnet to her eyebrows. But then, Gilbert could see a joke... She recalled the chummy laugh she and Gilbert had together... and wondered uneasily if life with a man who had no sense of humor might not be somewhat uninteresting in the long run...
"You can marry a rich man if you like, but you won't be happy. Folks can't get along in the world together without a little bit of love." – Sarah Crowe to Anne
"You'll feel differently about a good many things when you get to be my age. That's one of the things we learn as we get older – how to forgive. It comes easier at forty than it did at twenty." – Janet to Anne
"I can never forget the night I thought you were dying, Gilbert. Oh, I knew – I knew then – and I thought it was too late... I don't want sunbursts and marble halls. I just want you... Sunbursts and marble halls may be all very well, but there is more 'scope for the imagination' without them. And as for the waiting, that doesn't matter. We'll just be happy, waiting and working for each other – and dreaming. Oh, dreams will be very sweet now." – Anne to Gilbert after finally accepting his proposal